One week to go and I’m not even close to being ready. My house is in complete disarray, my car is neither clean nor packed. My supply list is a mile long with nothing crossed off of it. What am I doing? Frankly, I think I’m a little in denial that the Extravaganza is actually about to begin. I mean, it’s been a Plan for such a long time that now that it’s Reality I think I’m mildly freaked out. So what have I been doing while I should have been packing, cleaning, organizing and purchasing? Well…hanging out, imbibing, dining and most importantly…socializing. Here’s a sample of what’s been going on in lieu of trip preparations:
Camping at Devil’s Lake
Devil’s Lake State Park is a perennial favorite with the residents of Wisconsin for its plethora of outdoor activities, easy access and central location. Though I’ve been hiking at Devil’s Lake many times, this was my first experience camping there as available weekend spots are notoriously difficult to get during the summer. We had a great time swimming and hiking…though I remembered too late why it is better to start the West Bluff trail from the north end rather than the south as the stone staircase on the south end is far steeper than that on the north end.
Trip to Chicago
Last weekend I went with my friends Colette and Ryan to visit Ryan’s sister Amber in Chicago. After sufficiently clogging our arteries and singing along to Kenny Roger’s “The Gambler” at the Taste of Chicago, we headed down the street to Millennium Park…home of The Bean. Officially named Cloud Gate, everyone in Chicago refers to the sculpture by Anish Kapoor as The Bean because…well, it looks like one. If you are ever in Chicago you should check it out as it was an endless source of amusement for this trio of thirty year-olds and an optometry student. I cannot recommend standing beneath it and looking up, however, as doing so made me want to throw-up. We were particularly enthralled with the bizarreness of this photo (that’s me taking the picture):
Concerts on the Square
A Madison tradition… Bring your blanket, wine and cheese and prepare to feel like a rebel as you violate all sorts of open-container laws while sitting on the Capitol lawn. This year’s “Stars and Stripes Forever” program actually fell on Independence Day itself so was especially patriotic. Colette and Angie and I enjoyed the great weather, lack of mosquitoes and fabulous company…and the music too!
Tags: 1 - Pre-departure/Madison, Chicago